Abstract W P187: Utilization of Emergency Medical Services to Transfer Acute Stroke Patients Directly to Scanning Reduces the Length of Time to Scan Result
Background: Rapid assessment and treatment of acute stroke patients including computerized tomography (CT) scanning to determine the need for tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) has been shown to be vital to positive patient outcomes. As part of an ongoing effort to reduce door-to-needle time for such patients, the door-to-CT result time was identified as an area that could be reduced by collaborative effort between Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and Emergency Department (ED) staff. We hypothesized that implementing an EMS protocol for direct-to-CT scanning as part of a collaborative stroke alert protocol would reduce overall door-to-CT result time.
Methods: Local EMS and ED implemented criteria to alert the ED of acute stroke patients being transported to their facility. This alert included an estimated time of arrival and was sent to radiology, neurology, registration and pharmacy. Upon arrival, the patient was met by ED personnel while still on the EMS gurney. If the ED physician concurred with the field impression of acute stroke, the patient was taken directly to CT scanning by EMS. Data on time of door-to-CT result were collected from 7/9/12 to 7/8/13 and divided into those patients who received a stroke alert from EMS (n=41), and those who did not (n=81). All data are expressed as mean ± standard error.
Results: The time for door-to-CT result was reduced (p<0.0001) for patients who received a stroke alert from EMS [16.5 ± 1.2 vs 31.6 ± 1.5 minutes, alert vs no alert, respectively]. Similarly, in the subset of patients who received tPA after the CT scan, the mean time door-to-CT scan results was reduced (p<0.005) in those patients who received a stroke alert from EMS (14.3 ± 1.1 vs 36.4 ± 7.3 minutes, alert vs no alert, respectively).
Conclusions: Implementation of a stroke alert including a direct-to-CT protocol by EMS significantly reduced the mean door-to-CT result time in acute stroke patients. Expanding this protocol to include other area EMS services and hospitals could potentially result in a greater number of patients benefiting from these reduced times.
Author Disclosures: S. Dunbar: None. T. Hoffecker: None. A. Schwenk: None.
- © 2014 by American Heart Association, Inc.